Police conducting Operation Ore in the UK targeted all names for investigation due to the difference in laws in between the US and the UK, which allowed for arrest on a charge of incitement to distribute child pornography based solely on the presence of a name in the database, regardless if the card was used--fraudulently or not--for child pornography or other legal adult sites. Law in the UK allows conviction on the basis of incitement to distribute indecent images; as such, the mere presence on the database, regardless of the legality of the sites paid for, was sufficient to warrant prosecution. In all, 3,744 people were investigated and arrested and 1,451 of those convicted. However, a subsequent challenge by those targeted led to an independent reconstruction of the Landslide site and a closer inspection of the database and the payment transactions.
In 2005 and 2007 UK investigative journalist Duncan Campbell wrote a series of articles criticizing police forensic procedures and trial evidence. After obtaining copies of the Landslide hard drives, Campbell publicly identified evidence of massive credit card fraud, including thousands of charges where there was no access to any porn site at all. Campbell stated, "Independent computer expert Jim Bates of Computer Investigations said 'the scale of the fraud, especially hacking, just leapt off the screen'."
Campbell's articles also indicated that sworn statements provided by Dallas detective Steve Nelson and US postal inspector Michael Mead were false. They testified that entry to the Landslide site was through a front-page screen featuring a button saying “Click Here (for) Child Porn”. However, the later investigation established that the button was never on the website’s front page. Instead, it was on an advertising banner for another website buried deep in the Landslide offerings.
After Campbell's articles appeared, independent computer expert Jim Bates of Computer Investigations was charged and convicted of four counts of making false statements and one count of perjury regarding his qualifications and barred from appearing as an expert witness. He was later arrested for possession of indecent images during his Operation Ore investigation. However, the search of Bates' home was later ruled unlawful.
I like how the person who uncovered the incompetency of the LE was then attacked by them, but the evidence he uncovered was being used to exonerate people even several years later.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/n ... arges.html
(Note that this article is misleading in its characterization of a network of child porn sites, as wikileaks will cover shortly)
Jeremy Clifford, 51, from Watford, was arrested in 2003 as part of Operation Ore, Britain's biggest ever computer crime investigation. The nationwide swoop targeted thousands of people whose credit card details were found in a database taken from a network of child pornography websites in America.
A computer expert found no evidence to prosecute Mr Clifford, but Hertfordshire police charged him anyway.
Yesterday a judge at the High Court ruled that Det Con Brian Hopkins had “no honest belief” that Mr Clifford had downloaded indecent images of children, and brought charges “to protect his own position”.
Mr Clifford, who lost his film equipment business as a result of the allegation against him, was awarded damages of £20,000 and costs which a police spokesman said will run to hundreds of thousands of pounds.
Hertfordshire Constabulary was criticised by Mr Clifford's solicitors for the way it defended his claim of malicious prosecution and misfeasance in public office.
Wikileaks covered this with inside information from a person involved
One of the first big story was the alias of Landslide Operation Ore case. Allegedly 70,000 users had purchased child pornography from Landslide. The only ones that were really pleased were the Russians. Landslide had nothing to do with child pornography. But because Landslide developed a portal where also money was transferred, the Russian operators had opened accounts frequently and then tried to sell child pornography under these accounts. The manager of Landslide was extremely naive and did not have enough control over the accounts, payment processing and fraud. He did not notice that several credit cards were charged more than once, that client IPs did not match with the issuing bank, etc. - the CEO of Landslide was himself the victim of a gigantic fraud. The fact is that the CP operators had made a deal with the Russian Carders who got their credit cards and identities from the U.S. mafia (more specific information is given in the accompanying article from PC Pro). Under these CP accounts thousands of scammed and stolen (with the help of a trojan) credit cards were used so they brought the company Landslide insane revenues. But they were all stolen credit cards. Since it was already too late for Landslide and for thousands of innocent people, this meant the end of family life, loss of employment and even the end of any hope that led to a subsequent suicide. Much worse is that the U.S. police manipulated the website of Landslide AFTERWARDS (this is best described in PCPro).
There is undoubtedly, or at least certainly has been, a commercial CP industry. It is not the typical pattern. The overwhelming majority of CP is freely obtained from P2P networks. Much of the rest is freely obtained from imageboards and forums on the darknet. Some percentage of it is also distributed through members only groups that typically require uploads of new content, and this is what the CP crusaders are starting to focus on now, due to the fact that they can no longer maintain their story of the non-existent multi-billion-dollar CP industry.
http://www.nbcnews.com/id/32880508/ns/t ... increases/
Maalla urged international cooperation to stop the child pornography industry, which she estimated to be worth between $3 billion and $20 billion. She recommended countries share information on sites containing child pornography in order to block them faster.
Of course I've already plenty of times given links to the citations showing that the claims of a 3-20 billion dollar CP industry were entirely frabricated;
"child pornography is one of the fastest growing online businesses generating approximately $US3 billion ($3.43 billion) each year"
This '$US3 billion' figure has no credibility and even if it was factual as at January 2008, (when it appeared in an opinion article by Bernadette McMenamin, CEO of Child Wise/ ECPAT in Australia, with citing a source), then it could be regarded as 'good news' because it would mean (based on previously promulgated 'statistics') that there had been no increase at all in the five years to 2008, therefore 'child pornography' could not be "one of the fastest growing online businesses".
The '$US3 billion' figure has been promulgated far and wide since at least mid 2003, when Utah-based Jerry Ropelato commenced publishing it, without citing a source, on his web site InternetFilterReview.com, which has since become part of his TopTenReviews.com. According to Texas-based Red Orbit News (5 Nov 2006) Ropelato was "formerly chief operating officer of ContentWatch, a Salt Lake City-based developer of Internet filtering and virus protection software. He is also known locally as a speaker and presenter on Internet safety issues, and as a crusader against online pornography."
The "fastest growing online businesses" claim originated with the U.S. NCMEC, in August 2005, which based its claim on the then two-year old US$3 billion 'statistic' promulgated by Ropelato. (The U.S. NCMEC has a long history of promulgating exaggerated/false statistics.)
The origins and history of '$US3 billion' and 'fastest growing' claims is outlined below.
http://libertus.net/censor/resources/st ... s20billion
"child pornography is a $20 billion industry worldwide"
This out-of-date/discredited $20 billion 'statistic' was given new life in March 2008 when it appeared in Australian media reports as a result of a joint media release between the Australian Federal Police and Microsoft. The statistic was disowned in April 2006 by the organisations to which it had been, and still is being, attributed (i.e. the FBI and Unicef).
The history of this number is outlined below.
So now that this rhetoric cannot be used without people such as myself pointing out that it is completely made up, they shift their rhetoric
http://www.sabc.co.za/news/a/25fa9f804c ... s-20160331
Cyber sex dens are on the increase. And with credit cards linking transactions to people, Esmer says transactions are being paid for not with money, but with other pornographic images.
This was actually the case even at the time of the first "experts" testimony to the UN that it is a 3-20 billion dollar industry, at least to the extent that CP wasn't really a multi-billion dollar industry at any point in time. However, it is incorrect in that it gives the impression that distribution on these membership only groups that require uploads is the common practice, this is incorrect, the vast majority of CP is freely distributed through channels that have no membership requirements.